enter image description here

As you can see the pinky is twisted towards the ring finger causing it to mute strings.

Is there a way to fix this?

  • 1
    Probably because your whole hand needs to be moved so your thumb is lower, moving all fingers to a better position. It shouldn't then be problematic. And why you need all four on the same string? I can't see why.
    – Tim
    May 24 at 12:11
  • If you hold your hand in the same position without the guitar, you'll notice your pinky does the same thing. That's how our hands are built.
    – Aaron
    May 24 at 13:08
  • 1
    I am confused by your description as it appears that it is rotated away from the ring finger.
    – user50691
    May 28 at 13:16

Your fingers radiate out from your wrist in fan-like lines...

enter image description here

Open your hand with your fingers relaxed, they should be slightly spaced apart, palm facing you. then bend your pinky over to lay flat against your palm. If your hand is like mine, your pinky should be more or less folded over its metacarpal bone and pointing to the center of your wrist at an angle relative to the middle finger.

The pinky is aligned at an angle to the wrist that's why it leans over.

  • I've seen other people not having this issue and I probably tried every fretting hand positions, but it's still muting when I reach out far on 4-6th strings is this just a genetic thing that made my pinky more rotated than the other people's pinky? are there exercices to make my pinky less "rotated" when it's bent?
    – Michael Xu
    May 24 at 18:08
  • @MichaelXu, can you give string/fret numbers for what your fingering with pinky and then what is getting muted by mistake. Not clear if you mean the pinky note is muted or another string/fret. May 24 at 20:45
  • it's the other string behind the pinky's note
    – Michael Xu
    May 24 at 21:01
  • OK, then I agree with Tim's comment above, about lowering your thumb to get more in the middle of the back of the neck. Just look up proper hand position, you will see what to do. You need to get the part of you palm, where the finger start, up a bit from the neck, with a sort of arch to the whole hand. Also, the whitening of your fingernail tips seem to show you're squeezing really hard. You shouldn't need to. When you get the hand position better, you shouldn't need to squeeze hard and will get less unintended muting. May 24 at 21:25

There are a few things I notice in your picture:

Your thumb is behind your index finger - move it so it's more in line with your middle finger.

It looks like the bottom of the neck is really close to the palm of your hand right at the base of your fingers. You need to arch your hand more by placing your thumb lower on the back of the neck.

Finally, you want to have your wrist straighter - when the wrist is bent you limit your reach.

I'm going to attach a couple of pictures so you can see - my thumb is below the halfway point of the back of the neck, and you can see how much clearance there is from my palm. My wrist is bent in these, but it's just because I'm alone and holding my phone in my right hand - so the guitar is in lower than playing position just so I could get the pics.  When I'm playing my arm is straight from elbow to knuckles.enter image description here


You may just be born that way. Everyone's fingers are different. A little off-topic, I happened to have injured my pinky a long time ago by rupturing the pulley and dislocating my finger. I was not being smart and carried something way too heavy in my hand. Now it looks almost exactly like yours and it used to be straight. My advise is to not worry about it and play like natural for you. You may need to adjust your thumb position a little bit or use your ring finger more. A side story, I was in a guitar store one day and met a man who had chopped off his two middle fingers the week he was supposed to travel out west to play professionally. I have a soft spot for anyone that has had a hand injury and plays an instrument, especially that guy. Keep playing and doing what you love!

  • That story sounds like Tony Iommi from Black Sabbath.
    – user50691
    Jun 6 at 20:13
  • I thought of the same thing when he told me that haha
    – mrbean
    Jun 7 at 23:11

A little rotation is natural and should not be viewed a something to "fix" unless it is impeding your development and technique.

Many electric guitarists play with the fingers a little flatter, on the pad rather than on the tip. For classical this approach would not work since you typically want to hear the string just under your finger and playing flat fingered will dampen the adjacent string.

Based on the picture It does seem that your hand is cramped a little. Someone else has suggestion that your thumb is too close to the index finger. It is hard to see the angle of your wrist but that could also be too bent, causing you to curl the fingers more than you need to. Play with the arm posture, and the thumb placement. If you don't care about classical technique try playing flat fingered. Tiny adjustments until you get a goo comfortable feel. But the pinky will never be completely parallel to the other fingers and perpendicular to the fret board. That may be an unreasonable expectation.

And clip your finger nails. They are like daggers.

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